Whether it’s the Eagles lodge, Eagels Club, the Fraternal Order of Eagels, this Mattoon (central Il) venue was a first for Felix and Fingers. Who knows, it might also have been the first time Mattoon had dueling pianos! (Coincidentally, I did get a lead the following Monday for a holiday event in Mattoon)
This wedding wasn’t the standard Felix and Fingers wedding though – this night required a few “friends.”
The Dueling Pianos Wedding Band Option
For those of you familiar with the “Howl at the Moon” concept, you might be familiar with how Howl has their dueling pianists backed by a drummer and our guitarist (often dueling pianists themselves). Where as we try to reduce costs for our clients, most of our quotes are specifically for our two person show. Some of our swankier clients however might prefer the full band set up. This was the case for the Mattoon Eagles Lodge wedding.
Our Bride and Groom specifically requested that we be joined by a Guitarist and Drummer. This is something we’re more than comfortable with at Felix and Fingers, but rarely have the opportunity to coordinate. Our Guitarist was Eric Justen, a phenomenal Guitarist/Bassist from the northwest suburbs. Meanwhile, Matt Potts (my brother) helped us out on drums. Matt is a full time professional musician as well (blame my parents) and can be contacted through his steel pan website, pottsandpans.org.
Is a band needed for a wedding: no. Does Dueling Pianos get more fun with a band: Absolutely! Having a band affords us the luxury of being able to pass off solos to other people, or to have an authentic drum sound behind us. The band also fills our sound up, which can be great for a party crowd, but overwhelming for the smaller events. Regardless, it is always a treat playing with our preferred musicians!
T. Duncan Parker is one of our newer F&F performers (not even on the website yet!). Though this was far from his first gig with us, this blog is a bit of an informal welcome to the family. Want to hear him? Click Here! We’re looking forward to including Duncan on more F&F events, he fits right in!
Mattoon Fraternal Order of Eagles
I’ll admit it, I never knew there was a Fratenal Order of Eagles, but they have a national website! I was unable to locate a specific website or facebook page for this venue, but they can be contacted by phone at (217) 235-3033
The venue was a large open room with a great stage for a full band set up. There were absolutely touches of being in a Eagles club/Moose Lodge environment (i.e, large bingo score boards on a couple walls), but throw some nice table decorations into the mix and you have a perfect wedding venue. And for the band, we had an exceptionally easy load in/out through the side door, which puts the Eagle at the top of my list for venues!
Wedding Cake? Try Wedding Oreos!
This was a first for me. The Bride and Groom, instead of opting for a traditional cake, decided on a tiered Oreo cookie display, complete with milk! The idea was certainly endearing, and “cutting” the cake consisted of pulling apart an Oreo Cookie and then dunking it in Milk. I honestly really enjoyed the change and would recommend it to other brides, but with one warning.
Moments before “cutting” the “cake”, multiple guests approached the Oreo display and grabbed a couple cookies. This would be the equivalent of taking a slice of cake before the bride and groom cut it. And even though I tried to stop the guests and explain that this was the cake, I was utterly unsuccessful. If I learned one thing that night it is to not get between an elderly man and his sweets. Luckily, our bride was more amused than anything.
Central Illinois Dueling Pianos
Though this was our first time in Mattoon, we often perform in the Central IL area, especially around Springfield, Bloomington, Decatur and Champaign. We look forward to our net opportunity and our next Eagles Lodge event. And if you want to be the person to get us there again, just contact us now!
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